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4.0 out of 5 stars WHERE WARRIORS MET: Story of Lewa Downs in Kenya, 11 Dec. 2011
This review is from: Where Warriors Met: Story of Lewa Downs, Kenya (Paperback)
This book was first published in 1995, has 139 pages, 8 colour pictures, numerous B/W beautiful illustrations by Sarah Elder and 1 map of Kenya on page 24 and 1 colour map of Lewa Downs. This book narrates the story of 40,000 acre ranch of Lewa Downs in the northern foothills of Mt KENYA, farmed by 3 generations of Craig Family and now sanctuary to black rhino and as Lewa Wildlife Conservancy(LWC) since 1993. Lewa Downs(men Drinking) was no man's land between Meru and Ndorobo tribes.The book starts with pre-history of Lewa Downs and the prehistoric findings in the area and the volcanic activity which shaped this beautiful area. The soldier settler scheme and the railhead at THIKA were 2 reasons for new settlers to come near Lewa Downs in 1920's.
Alexander Douglas had arrived here from South Africa. He started an ox-wagon transport business and in 1922 met Elizabeth Cross. After having Delia, Elizabeth married Will Powys in 1934 in his neighbouring farm of 'KISIMA'. Delia met David Craig and they married in 1949, taking over Lewa Downs from Alex(AD) in 1952, both Top and Bottom farms. Alex died in 1972. The Top farm 4 hours away was sold to Kenyan Government in 1971. The family built a new house on 'Bottom Farm' and bought some land from neighbours who were leaving. Alex had another large farm at SOY near Eldoret, which was also taken over for settlement. David and Delia had 3 children, Susan, Ian and William.
The Wilderness Trails Lodge is now run by William and his wife Emma. The name came from walking safaris -'Wilderness Trails', pioneered by Peter Hankin. Anna Merz helped to form the Ngare Sergio Rhino Sanctuary in Lewa Downs. The first rhino arrived in 1984. Poacher proof electric fence was erected at Lewa and Ngare Ndare forest at its south. Lewa also has white rhinos. All this lead in 1993, to the formation of LWC(Lewa Wildlife Conservancy). Laikipia elephant project protects elephants in this area.The Ilngwesi Group Ranch, northwest of Lewa is run by Mukogodo Maasai and tourist income helps them and the wildlife. In 1990, sitatunga entelope was introduced to Lewa Swamp from Lake Victoria area. 350 giraffes were translocated to Samburu from Lewa. LWC employes 350 people to keep wildlife, ranch and people safe.
Some of Lewa's accomodation are,(1)Wilderness Trails Lodge,(2) LWC lodge,(3)Lewa Safari Camp and (4)Lewa Wilderness Camp. Other activities include Kisuma Carpets, furniture workshop and schools. The rest of this book is on animals found at Lewa on day and night game drives, featuring fantastic B/W line drawings of these animals. Some other books of interest are:-
(1) Black Laughter, L Powys 1924
(2) The Year of the Lion, Hanley 1955
(3) The life of the Artist(The Vivid Canvas), Collyer 1935(2010)
(4) From Ox Cart to Email, Breed 2011
(5) An African Love Story, Dame Daphne Sheldrick 2012
(6) Rhino, At the Brink of Extinction, Anna Merz 1993
Having born in Kenya, I found the book interesting.
Read and ENJOY.
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